Condos are hot and getting hotter, according to the Texas Condominium Mid-Year Sales Report from the Texas Association of Realtors. Statewide, condo sales rose an average of 10.5 percent year-over-year between the months of January and May of 2014. In San Antonio condo sales were up 18 percent, followed by Austin at 14 percent, Houston at 6 percent and Dallas at 4 percent.
“The thriving economic growth in Texas’ major metro areas has led to a revitalization and redevelopment of our urban centers, providing new needs and opportunities for condo development,” said Dan Hatfield, chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors. “Condos offer greater affordability and inventory than other housing types on the market and, as a result, are playing an increasingly important role in the Texas housing market as a whole.”
Of course, condo construction is up in many metro areas, with available land within the city’s core dwindling, thus forcing developers to maximize their land footprint.
“There is little available land for housing development in Texas’ major metro areas, particularly in its urban centers where housing demand is strongest,” said Jim Gaines, Ph.D., economist with The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University. “Developers are now looking upward for opportunities to build and investing in multi-family developments both in these centers and even in some suburban areas. Condo sales will likely be a strong driver in the Texas housing market for the rest of the year.”
Still, Dallas condo inventory remained flat year-over-year for the period while prices are up, with 2,383 condos sold with a median price of $160,000, a 4 percent gain from the year prior. “New listings remained statistically unchanged at 3,470 listings, whereas active listings dropped 14 percent to 1,383 and pending sales increased 5 percent to 2,361 from January to May. Finally, the average days on market dropped to 62, a 15 percent decrease from the year prior,” the report stated.
May was Dallas’ hottest month for condo sales this year, with 637 closing during the month. Contrast that to January, in which only 331 condos were sold. The average price per-square-foot during the period was $136, higher than Houston’s $120 and lower than Austin’s $205.
What do you think these trends spell for the second half of 2014? Will condo sales keep up the record pace, or will they cool along with the rest of the Dallas housing market?